Opinions On Unchaperoned Students at Theme Parks

Discussion in 'The Watercooler' started by SRL, May 17, 2007.

  1. SRL

    SRL Active Member

    Opinions please? At what age/grade would you feel comfortable letting your easy child child wander around a major theme park in groups of 4 or more students (unchaperoned by adults)while on a school trip?
  2. klmno

    klmno Active Member

    School trip- with other adults from the group roaming too?? Well, I was in band as a kid and we were allowed to do this from 7th grade on (12-13 I guess). I think they mixed 7th and 8th graders though so some might have been 13-14. Our punishment would have been being kicked out of band if we broke a major rule. These days, and knowing my difficult child, seems like it would be better to wait until older. Sometimes, they can split up into groups that have different aggendas- let the kid pick which "itenerary" they are interested in, but have an adult chaperone for each of these groups.
  3. Kathy813

    Kathy813 Well-Known Member Staff Member

    Is the park closed to everyone except the school? Then I would be okay with letting a middle schooler participate.

    Otherwise, probably high school. Of course, both of my girls accused me of being overprotective.

    It would also depend on the child and how responsible and trustworthy they were.

  4. SRL

    SRL Active Member

    Saturday, major theme park with huge rides, open to the public, near a large metropolitan area, 1 teacher plus unknown # of adult chaperones, one student check in scheduled at midpoint.
  5. Suz

    Suz (the future) MRS. GERE

    If we're talking about Rob, I'd say 40 years old.


    Still, based on what you are describing, I'd have to say high school age (yes, I'm also overly protective).

  6. flutterbee

    flutterbee Guest

    12 years old for easy child kids. But I'd have more than one check-in time. So maybe 14 for only one check-in time.
  7. Kathy813

    Kathy813 Well-Known Member Staff Member

    In that case, definitely high school.

    I bet that won't make someone happy.

  8. slsh

    slsh member since 1999

    Definitely HS. Being the overprotective mother I am (just ask Weeburt), probably 16, minimum, and then only with- the easy child-est of PCs equipped with- cell phone and global positioning device in shoes.

    While I know I grew up in a different era, if not safer then at least the underside of life was less well known, I'm simply *appalled* that my parents let me go to the mall with- one friend, unchaperoned, at the ripe old age of 12. We're talking for the entire day. My poor kids.... they'll probably be 25 before I let that happen (I know, dream on, LOL).

    But a theme park... urg, yes, definitely older HS age.
  9. tiredmommy

    tiredmommy Well-Known Member

    These are the sort of trips that I would move heaven & earth to be a chaperon at. Then I'd hand select a group of kids (my friends' kids) for me to personally supervise.
  10. LittleDudesMom

    LittleDudesMom Well-Known Member Staff Member

    For a resposible kid, I would say beginning about 7th grade. If it's a school thing, I suprised they are not having the kids in groups with at least one adult chap.
  11. SearchingForRainbows

    SearchingForRainbows Active Member

    This would make me very nervous. No matter how responsible the child is, in my humble opinion, there just isn't enough supervision. Plus, some of the adult chaperones might have very different views than you do on what is considered ok for the kids to do alone and what isn't. For these reasons, I would have to say that even my easy child would have to be in high school.

    I think TM had an excellent idea when she said she would want to be one of the chaperones. I would definitely have to be one of the chaporones, or one of my friends' would have to be a chaperone, before I would let my kids go if they weren't in high school. WFEN
  12. Nancy

    Nancy Well-Known Member Staff Member

    8th grade.

  13. Sheila

    Sheila Moderator

    easy child -- maybe 15, but even at 15 it would depend on the child.
  14. WhymeMom?

    WhymeMom? No real answers to life..

    tiredmommy has the right idea....
  15. DammitJanet

    DammitJanet Well-Known Member

    IM trying to remember when we used to go to Busch Gardens or Kings Dominion in groups. I know we went to Disney at 13.

    It must have been middle school aged.
  16. Wiped Out

    Wiped Out Well-Known Member Staff Member

    I remember going to a major theme park in 9th grade with-o chaperones. I've taken high school kids. easy child is going this summer-not sure what the chaperone situation will be.
  17. Fran

    Fran Former desparate mom

    Local parks with a easy child is probably 13 or so(with a cell phone)checking in from time to time.

    I let easy child with two other 17yr olds wander wife for a few days alone. I wouldn't have allowed it if he hadn't shown he could handle a day at a time as a younger teen.

    difficult child is still a little lost at an amusement park.

    Gradual loosening of the reins of supervision for a easy child is better than sudden let loose when they are in college. On the other hand, I am a safety nut with both my sons.
  18. SRL

    SRL Active Member

    <div class="ubbcode-block"><div class="ubbcode-header">Originally Posted By: Suz</div><div class="ubbcode-body">If we're talking about Rob, I'd say 40 years old.
    Suz </div></div>

    LOL, I'm sure you're not the only mom who has that for a target age.

    This is a trip for 7th graders-an optional trip we signed up for last fall combining a band competition with theme park afterwards. Chaperones signed up and paid then and there was no word that more were needed. We parents just assumed that the kids would be in groups with one adult like they were the previous year. When we got the sheet home last week clearly the plan from the start was to let the kids go like this. A number of us wouldn't have signed our kids on had we known of the (lack of) supervision arrangements. It puts us in a bad way with our kids if we press ourselves on as chaperones at this point (if that's even possible) and insist that our teens stay with us when the rest of the group is going loose. If we pull the kids out, it doesn't send a good message either because they committed to a group performance. If we drive to bring kids home after the performance, it's 6+ hours in the car. It's a no win no matter what we do.

    7th grade still seems young. Heck, the school doesn't even allow kids this age to go to their lockers without a pass! My easy child's a little older due to having a summer birthday and is a responsible kid. If I could be sure he'd be with a group who was equally responsible I'd feel more easy. I used to do this trip with my band, but that was high school.

    Thanks for you input, everyone. easy child's going but I'm not happy about it.
  19. Kjs

    Kjs Guest

    My difficult child has had a season pass for six flags last year, again this year. Hasn't had a school trip, but we have dropped off difficult child and friends both last year and anticipate doing it this year. I cannot do those rides and it would be a waste of $50+ for me to go just to sit there. We keep in contact with him via cell phone, and have cell phone numbers of the rest of the kids. They sometimes stand in line for one ride for 90 minutes. Sometimes we drive out and meet them in the picnic area for lunch(by drop off site). He was 11 last year. We have had season passes since he was born, heck 5 years before he was born. Back when I still liked those rides. easy child worked there when he was 14.
    So, difficult child had 10 years of going several times a week. He knows where everything is, including first aide, and "lost parents". With everyone having cell phones if they become disconnected they just call each other. If difficult child does not hear from us, he has certain times he must call. If not..he stays home. And it is loud, especially when you are on a ride. wouldn't want him to try to answer then. He has not had any problems, and I am not worried about him having any. If he wants to come home he only needs to call.
  20. Abbey

    Abbey Spork Queen

    When I taught in Florida, each 9 weeks we had a trip to one of the theme parks. Kids were to stay in groups of 4 and had to check in at two different times during the day. They were completely unsupervised. I did this for 11 years with 6th graders. Never had one problem. Could a problem happen? Of course, but I think it's more likely to happen on school campus then when they're out having fun.